Our AAA Credit Rating
With the very real possibility of a sovreign debt default in Greece, and the instability it has caused global financial markets, many have asked what it would take the USA to lose its AAA credit rating. After all, any downgrade would have devastating effects on the markets, not to mention sharply increasing the interest rate taxpayers pay on our national debt.
So, in the spirit of transparency, Moody's has released what level of national debt would cause us to lose our AAA rating:
"The key data point in Moody's view is the size of federal interest payments on the public debt as a percentage of tax revenue. For the U.S., debt service of 18%-20% of federal revenue is the outer limit of AAA-territory, Moody's managing director Pierre Cailleteau confirmed in an e-mail."
Well, that's not so bad is it? I mean I'm sure we won't hit that, will we?
Under the Obama budget, interest would top 18% of revenue in 2018 and 20% in 2020, CBO projects. But under more adverse scenarios than the CBO considered, including higher interest rates, Moody's projects that debt service could hit 22.4% of revenue by 2013.
CBO: Millions To Pay Obamacare Tax
Okay, so, admittedly President Obama's pledge to not to raise “any form” of taxes on families making less than $250,000 per year has become little more than a running joke, breached more times now than I can list in this blog post. Still, it's interesting to note that the Congressional Budget Office has just released a report with a conservative estimate that 3 million American families earning less than $59,000 a year will be hit with the Obamacare Tax.
So, that's another three million families that President Obama has flat-out, blatantly, and shamelessly lied to.
The moral bankruptcy in Washington DC never ceases to amaze me.
(H/T American Spectator)
Economists Agree: The "Stimulus" Failed
Well, well, well, color me shocked:
"In latest quarterly survey by the National Association for Business Economics...a majority of respondents felt the fiscal stimulus had no impact...About 73% of those surveyed said employment at their company is neither higher nor lower as a result of the $787 billion Recovery Act, which the White House's Council of Economic Advisers says is on track to create or save 3.5 million jobs by the end of the year...That sentiment is shared for the recently passed $17.7 billion jobs bill that calls for tax breaks for businesses that hire and additional infrastructure spending."
A trillion dollars of taxpayer money down the sinkhole, and... for nothing.
Raise My Taxes!!!
Last week, the SEIU bussed people into the Illinois state capital in an astroturf operation calling for tax hikes to protect plushy union contracts. The professional protesters actually chanted "raise my taxes!"
Except, as the below video makes clear, it's not their taxes they want raised. Oh no, can't have that. Rather, it's your taxes:
Of course, this type of behavior is completely unsurprising from an unscrupulous and corrupt organization such as the SEIU, and there is no doubt that if taxes are raised, the economic effects will be disastrous. Still, the gall of these people never fails to astound.
(Oh, by the way, if you want to pay more taxes, just set up a "Tax Me More" fund. I'm sure SEIU members would love to contribute)
UPDATE: ATR's Brian Johnson was on KION radio on this very matter. Listen to the clip here!
Brace yourself, you won't believe this...
Brace yourself. This post is going to blow your mind. I mean it. There is no way anyone could have seen this one coming. Because, you see, according to a report by the Chief Actuary of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid services... wait for it... Obamacare will cost the taxpayer considerably more than the Administration & Congressional Leaders promised. Oh, and healthcare costs for individuals will go up as well.
I mean wow... who would have seen that one coming? I'm shocked. Utterly shocked.
(H/T The Corner)
I think we may have located the problem...
You know how we at ATR have been scratching our heads trying to work out why-oh-why, despite all the evidence saying it's a bad idea, and it isn't working, the Administration continues down a path of bailouts, spending sprees, and fiscal vandalism?Well, I think we have our answer.
From yesterday's Meet The Press with Secretary of the Treasury, Tim Geithner:
TIMOTHY GEITHNER: You know, I'm-- I'm not an economist, David...
Oh. Um. Okay.
Well, I guess that clears up a few things. I suppose we were foolish and naive to have expected the Secretary of the Treasury to actually understand economics...
More Tax Hikes On Persons Earning Under $200,000
Of course, continuing to make Orwell proud, on Saturday Obama said that he kept his promise not to tax families making less than $250,000 per year. So it was nice to see the Joint Committee on Taxation say yesterday that this was... how do I put it... a lie.
As The Hill reports:
Taxpayers earning less than $200,000 a year will pay roughly $3.9 billion more in taxes — in 2019 alone — due to healthcare reform, according to the Joint Committee on Taxation, Congress's official scorekeeper...Once the law is fully implemented in 2019, the JCT estimates the deduction limitation will affect 14.8 million taxpayers — 14.7 million of them will earn less than $200,000 a year. These taxpayers are single and joint filers, as well as heads of households.
Um... Did The New York Times Just Say Death Panels Will Save Money?
Two weeks ago, we wrote with some surprise that President Obama's lackey-economist Paul Krugman said that death panels - sorry "advisory panels" - would save money by denying people healthcare.
Now it seems even the Administration's newspaper,
From an economic perspective, health reform will fail if we can’t sometimes push back against the try-anything instinct. The new agencies will be hounded by accusations of rationing, and Medicare’s long-term budget deficit will grow.So figuring out how we can say no may be the single toughest and most important task facing the people who will be in charge of carrying out reform. “Being able to say no,” Dr. Alan Garber of Stanford says, “is the heart of the issue.”
David Leonhardt goes on to praise ObamaCare as the start of saying “no” to people who want more health care. That’s an interesting tack for the Times to take, especially after its screeching over the use of “death panels” by critics, which meant exactly the same thing. Now they admit that the “most important task” of the people running the ObamaCare reform is to deny people medical care — under circumstances where a group of elites decide it’s not worth it.
Government Run Healthcare Continued
Two more stories about government run healthcare in practice:
A dying mother last night became the human face of an election battle over the NHS. Nikki Phelps, 37, who has a rare glandular cancer, has been refused the only drug that could prolong her life. Despite pleas from her consultant, her local NHS trust says it will not meet the £100-a-day cost.
As noted at Secondhand Smoke:
That would be the same NICE that former Senator Tom Daschle–who the NYT called the most influential non government adviser on Obamacare–wants our system to emulate. If it does–and the pieces are in place now to create a US NICE that would have say over private as well as public policies–we will see this story repeated repeatedly here once the new health care law goes into full gear.This could mean government bureaucrats and bioethicists interfering with the treatment decisions of patients and doctors
As many as 140,000 non-medical staff, including porters and housekeepers, have access to sensitive NHS patient files, it emerged last night.
Well, President Obama said he wanted greater access to our hospital records to be centralized and shared, so get ready for the same thing over here...
The Massachusetts Mandate Fail, & What It Means For Obamacare
A new report has come out on the healthcare mandate in Massachusetts, the model which Obamacare was founded upon:
Thousands of consumers are gaming Massachusetts’ 2006 health insurance law by buying insurance when they need to cover pricey medical care, such as fertility treatments and knee surgery, and then swiftly dropping coverage, a practice that insurance executives say is driving up costs for other people and small businesses.
Hmm. I wonder who could have forseen this? Oh, that's right, Americans for Tax Reform said that this will be exactly what people will do under Obamacare.
How long will it take Congress to wake up to the overwhelming evidence that Obamacare is fundamentally flawed, repeal it, and replace it with something that actually works?
At this rate, I'm not hopeful.